Applications on mobile devices, or apps in short. A lot of them nowadays, both on Apple (which uses iOS) and Android (the rest of the well-known ecosystem). So, as a marketing manager, when do you decide to cross that digital bridge? For some, it is fashionable to have an app. Never mind whether it does something useful or not. Some brownie points with your CEO, and an interesting conversation-starter at networking meetings (“have you checked out our app yet?”). Well, all said and done, its better NOT to have an app than to have one that doesn’t do much other than sit on your customers phone waiting for that elusive click.
For some businesses, an app is a given. Banks and media sites are the obvious choices. For others, it’s a decision that needs some thinking. Some questions that spring to mind are:
Is it essential?
Will it contain relevant information that my customers will use?
How much information will I have to put in there?
Will it genuinely contribute to my marketing efforts?
Will it reach my target audience?
What digital ecosystems am I targeting? (making a BlackBerry app only, for example, wouldn’t really be helpful, considering your complete audience itself would be miniscule to start with).
And most importantly, how much will it cost me?
Once you have debated and answered all the questions above (except the cost, which I will come to in a bit), set a target. How many downloads are you aiming for per month? Its useless to create an app and not market it, hence you would have to factor in the marketing costs here as well. How often will it be updated?
For information-only apps, create an information docket. It should be crisp, easy to read and to the point. Remember, your customer would mostly access it on a smartphone, which at 4-5 inches, isn’t the best medium to read pages and pages of yada-yada. Think of functionality. Since your screen real estate is limited, you need to envision how the information will flow from one page to another, and how the customer would get to the relevant pages in the shortest time. What kind of images do I need on this app?
Ok, I know you are still thinking of the costs. Lets put it this way. You get what you pay for. A very limited budget may get you an app, but it may not even come close to what you set out to achieve. Unlimited budgets are good news for media companies such as ours, but then you don’t want to create an elephant to move a cart. Think Goldilocks and the “just right” principle.
Deciding to create an app for your business is a move in the right direction, and we are here to help you out. Talk to us; let us guide you through the process. I assure you, the costs will be more than worth the benefits.
Be a part of the new “app”roach in digitization!